The post of Karmapa - spiritual head of Tibetan Buddhism's Karma Kagyu sect - is not only controversial because of the government's crackdown against the "17th Karmapa" Ugyen Trinley Dorje but also because of the fact that there is another claimant to the same post - Trinlay Thaye Dorje.
This matter has been subjudice in Sikkim and on July 27 the Supreme Court will decide whether to move the case to any other court. If the case is shifted out of Sikkim it may mark the beginning of a decisive phase over the control of Rumtek Monastery where the Brajramukut is located.
Because of the claims and counterclaims, the post of Karmapa has been lying vacant since the 16th Karmapa Rangjung Rigpe Dorje passed away in 1981 in the US. The headquarters of the Kagyu sect or the Karmapa is in fact the Rumtek Monastery, which has banned Ugyen's entry in to the monastery.
While there was support for Ugyen when he arrived in India in 2000, New Delhi does not recognise Ugyen as the 17th Karmapa. Trinlay Thaye Dorje (27), who also claims to be the 17th Karmapa came here in 1994 after threat from Beijing following his "anointment". However, both Dalai Lama and the Chinese government recognise Ugyen (25) as the Karmapa.
Shamar Rinpoche, the second important lama of the Kagyu sect, claimed that Trinlay would get justice if the case continued in Sikkim and therefore, he was pinning all his hopes on the SC decision. "We are eagerly waiting justice for Trinlay," Shamar Rinpoche said on the eve of the SC decision